What is the Capstone Experience?

DEFINITION

Capstone experience integrates coursework, knowledge, skills and experiential learning to enable the student to demonstrate a broad mastery of learning across the curriculum for further career advancement.

The capstone experience enables students to:

  • have an overview of what they have accomplished in their degree program
  • relate discipline-specific learning outcomes to the real world
  • link their knowledge and abilities to future employment or higher education
  • showcase their competency in certain areas
  • substantiates personal and academic learning as well as professional development and achievement.

EXAMPLES

Capstone experiences include but are not limited to

  • culminating senior experiences
  • achievement portfolio
  • senior project
  • thesis
  • comprehensive examination
  • practicum
  • internship
  • field experience, co-op experience, clinical assignment
  • study abroad

Capstone experience can be implemented as a capstone course or as capstone experience that is spread out in several courses in a degree program.

FEATURES

Capstone experience typically involves:

  • integrating and extending knowledge, skills, perspectives gained through previous coursework, thus demonstrating program’s outcomes concretely
  • reflecting on the social context, the body of literature, or the conceptual framework to which the student’s capstone work poses a contribution.
  • bridging coursework with students’ careers after graduation
  • preparing students for life-long learning
  • the outcome is a tangible product to be presented to the public (written work, oral presentation, multimedia productions in various forms such as websites, CDs, DVDs)
  • topics are selected by students and approved by faculty